NOTE: Grant will be away training in Thailand until December 20.

What is Ched Hak Thai massage?

Ched Hak is an ancient Lanna technique to remove toxins from the body. Ched means to wipe, and Hak means to split or mark. This treatment intends to purify, clean, and bring vitality to the energy of the receiver.
Ched Thai massage tools FB



For this treatment, a traditional Thai massage practitioner selects a leaf such as a longan leaf or a mango leaf and recites a mantra to give healing powers to that leaf. The practitioner then wipes the affected area to remove the toxins while reciting prayers and chants of empowerment.

The practitioner wipes the affected area with the shiny side of the leaf. They use long strokes that move out from the centre of the body to the extremities. The intent is to push the toxin away from the abdomen. Once the practitioner has finished with an area, they discard the leaf and use a new one for the next area.

Traditional Thai Ched treatment
Traditional Thai Hak treatment


Traditionally, a Hak treatment differed from a Ched treatment in that a traditional Thai massage practitioner used a wild animal’s fang, bone or claw instead of a leaf. It is now illegal for doctors to use items from wild animals, so instead, a traditional Thai massage practitioner will now use a wooden knife with mantras written on it instead of a fang or claw.

A Hak treatment is similar to a Ched treatment. The practitioner blesses the object before the treatment to give it spiritual healing power and then scratches the area that requires healing while chanting mantras. Similar to Ched, the practitioner uses long strokes that move outward from the centre of the body.


Doctor scraping arm during Hak treatment
There are many benefits from Ched and Hak treatments:
  • Traditional Thai massage practitioners use these treatments to cleanse the body from toxins due to animal bites or insect stings.

  • The treatments bring balance to the four elements in the recipient’s body.
  • The traditional Thai belief is that these treatments eliminate any influences from black magic and certain spirits.
The result is that there is both physical and psychological healing.

Where to Experience

Ched Hak treatments are scarce in Thailand, but there are two schools in Chiang Mai where you can experience or learn this traditional form of Thai medicine. The Hangdong Thai Massage School and the Jongrak Thai Massage School.

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